Santa Barbara Wedding Photographers:
Everything You Need to Know
Once you’ve selected your wedding date, it’s time to review the portfolios of illustrious Santa Barbara wedding photographers and book your favorite. Your Santa Barbara wedding photographer is there to make sure you don't miss a single memory. The best wedding photographers in Santa Barbara will capture your special day so that you can relive this incredible event every time you see a photograph.
What makes Santa Barbara the ideal spot to get married? We’re glad you asked. In 2020 alone, nearly 2,000 couples tied the knot in this stunning coastal city affectionately dubbed the “American Riviera.”
Here are some of the top reasons that couples decide to wed in Santa Barbara:
- Vibrant, sun-washed landscapes
- A variety of historic and contemporary venues
- Idyllic ocean views that help your Santa Barbara wedding photographer craft incredible shots
- Breathtaking settings for your wedding photography shot list
What to Look for in Santa Barbara Wedding Photographers
At Carats and Cake, we help simplify finding the perfect wedding photographer in Santa Barbara for your big day. Our directory of the best wedding photographers in Santa Barbara is a curated list of the top, trusted professionals in the area. As you browse through these talented photographers and their work, not only will you find plenty of inspiration for creative wedding photos at some of the most magnificent locations in and around town, you can get an idea of different Santa Barbara wedding photographers’ style by looking at pictures of bridal parties at wedding venues in the city.
As you peruse these impressive portfolios, jot down a short list of favorites. There are plenty of options for Santa Barbara wedding photography, so keep a running list of those who stand out and whose photography styles you like. To find the best wedding photographers in Santa Barbara for you, look for:
- Wedding shots that reflect your personal couples style
- Creative wedding photo ideas that you’d like to replicate or modify on your big day
- Santa Barbara beach wedding photography if you're planning a beach wedding
- Santa Barbara wedding photographers who specialize in outdoor venues, like the Santa Barbara courthouse gardens
- A Santa Barbara wedding photographer who takes especially unique wedding photos
Once you’ve identified the best Santa Barbara wedding photographers and a few possible Santa Barbara photo shoot locations, check on their availability for your wedding date. If that day is open, you can reach out to request additional information and a price list.
Santa Barbara wedding photographer rates vary. Your Santa Barbara wedding photography cost will depend on several factors, such as how many hours you will need with the photographer and how many people are on the photographer’s team.
How Much Do Santa Barbara Wedding Photographers Cost?
One of the first—and most important—tasks you will complete when you are planning your wedding is deciding on a budget. Each Santa Barbara wedding cost—from flowers to Santa Barbara wedding photography—must ultimately be within your price range. Starting with an understanding of the average cost of wedding photographer in Santa Barbara will help you figure out what is both feasible—and realistic—for you. Of course, there are also a few variables that impact the average cost of wedding photographer in Santa Barbara, such as the time of year.
Recent statistics show that when you are planning on a wedding in Santa Barbara, you can expect to spend around $29,000. In comparison, the average total for weddings in California was $31,000. Nationwide, Americans spent an average of $19,000 in 2020 to get married.
Couples typically allocate 10-12 percent of their budget on wedding photographers in Santa Barbara. For example, if your wedding budget is $30,000, plan to allot $3,000 to $4,000 for your Santa Barbara wedding photographer.
Your Santa Barbara wedding photographer may offer wedding photography packages based on a specific number of hours needed to complete your shot list, the number of photographers and assistants on his or her team, an engagement shoot, and the kind of photo album/digital photography package you want to receive after the event. Others will work through your wedding photography shots list and come up with a number based on an hourly rate (with separate, incremental charges for prints, albums or any other add-ons.) Alternatively, your wedding photographer in Santa Barbara may offer a choice of wedding photography packages for the big day itself. You can ask your Santa Barbara wedding photographer more about their individual pricing strategy and unique photography packages.
Depending on your budget and Santa Barbara wedding photographer rates, you can economize too. For example, limit bride and groom plus wedding family photos to just one or two wedding photo shoot locations to reduce the amount of time needed. Select only the wedding photo packages that comfortably fit within your budget.
Keep in mind that many couples end up hiring their Santa Barbara engagement photographer for the wedding too. If you like your engagement photos, be sure to check the photographer’s availability for your wedding date. Your Santa Barbara engagement photographer can be an excellent option when selecting a photographer for your wedding, as you already are familiar with their style and pricing.
How Do Santa Barbara Wedding Photo Packages Work?
Your Santa Barbara wedding photographer will likely take several hundred shots on your wedding day alone. A deluxe photo package typically includes engagement pictures, pre-wedding events such as your rehearsal dinner, and of course, pre-ceremony, ceremony and reception photos.
After discussing what you’d like your wedding photographers in Santa Barbara to capture for your wedding, they will draw up a wedding photography contract. The contract that your Santa Barbara wedding photographers create must contain the following:
- The wedding date, time and venue
- A general wedding photos list
- Package price or per-hour fee
- An estimated total wedding photography cost
- Minimum number of digital proofs (and whether any retouching services are included)
- When you will receive them
- Deposit/payment services
- Cancellation policy
Planning Your Santa Barbara Wedding Shot List
If you have certain pictures that you want to be captured on your wedding day, it’s essential that you communicate this with your Santa Barbara wedding photographer. Be sure to make a personal Santa Barbara wedding photos list. If you are unsure of what should be included on your Santa Barbara wedding shot list, you could always ask your photographer for suggestions that suit your style. You can also browse our library of Santa Barbara weddings for creative wedding photo ideas. Your wedding shots will be as unique as your love story, so don’t be afraid to customize your list. Your Santa Barbara wedding shots list might include:
- Bride portraits
- Groom portraits
- First look wedding ideas
- Couples portraits
- Wedding party
- Wedding family photos
- Ceremony photos
- Wedding cake
- First dance
- Wedding Venue
Most Popular Santa Barbara Wedding Shoot Locations
Santa Barbara has proved itself to be one of the premier places to get married on the coast of California. As a result, there are plenty of beautiful Santa Barbara wedding venues. From historic Spanish Revival hotels to the hacienda-style Ritz-Carlton Bacara and beyond, Santa Barbara boasts a number of picturesque hotel venues. These stunning spaces make for unique wedding photos—complete with breathtaking views of Santa Barbara beaches.
Santa Barbara Courthouse Weddings
With its Spanish-Moorish style facade and lush gardens, the Santa Barbara courthouse offers a picture-perfect setting for your Santa Barbara wedding. Your Santa Barbara courthouse wedding will dazzle your attendees, and the beauty of your photographs shot on location will speak for themselves.
Santa Barbara Garden Weddings
Throughout the city of Santa Barbara as well as the parks in nearby Montecito, the area is a mecca for the marriage-minded. A collection of fabulous, themed gardens cater to your fondest wedding photo dreams.
Santa Barbara Zoo Weddings
One of the more creative Santa Barbara photo shoot locations, the zoo offers scenic hilltop ocean views and 30 acres of animal habitat.
Santa Barbara Vineyard Weddings
With rolling hills, rows of grapevines and eye-catching architecture, Santa Barbara vineyards are fertile ground for your wedding photos.
Santa Barbara Estates
Wondering where to get married in the American Riviera? The mansions of the Riviera Mansion, of course. These opulent historic landmarks are gracious estates that offer elegant photo shoot locations for your wedding photographers in Santa Barbara. An ornate estate will photograph beautifully while serving as the ultimate backdrop for your Santa Barbara wedding.
Santa Barbara Ranches
Tap into the old West with a photo shoot at one of the ranch-style Santa Barbara wedding venues. From an intimate barn wedding to dramatic stone barns and olive groves, ranch venues are ideal backdrops for your Santa Barbara wedding photographer to give you the gorgeous pictures you’re seeking.
Santa Barbara Beaches
Looking to have your very own Santa Barbara beach wedding? Santa Barbara boasts several beaches that feature stunning views of the Pacific Ocean, establishing it as the perfect place to say “I do.”
How Do I Get in Contact with Santa Barbara Wedding Photographers?
You can review a myriad of photos taken by the best wedding photographers in Santa Barbara in our library of Santa Barbara weddings, and compile a list of the photographers who captured your favorites as you search. Once you identify your personal list of the best wedding photographers in Santa Barbara for your special day, you can contact them directly through our site. Using our directory to choose a wedding photographer in Santa Barbara is a quick, easy way to ensure that you’ll have lovely, everlasting memories of your special celebration. With so many talented Santa Barbara wedding photographers to choose from, you are sure to find the one that will provide you with the Santa Barbara wedding photo packages of your dreams!